I’m So Done With BET

29 Jun

Mj_jbMichael Jackson and James Brown shared a moment at the 2003 BET Awards.

The unexpected passing of Michael Jackson provided BET with a very unique opportunity to do a timely tribute to one of the world’s greatest entertainers with some of today’s brightest talent. Yes, they only had a few days to pull it off and yes award shows are very complicated to produce, but they had a chance to do it right.

BET failed miserably.

I knew I was in for a long show when New Edition opened with that less than stellar performance. I love New Edition, but that was not good. Johnny Gill did however redeem himself later during the O’Jays tribute with Tyrese and Trey Songz.  The whole show was awkward because BET honchos  decided to free up time for tributes by not reading the names of nominees for most of the awards. So there was no suspense and no sense of competition. It was just poorly executed.

The ONLY person who hit it out of the park in terms of honoring MJ was Ne-Yo. His “Lady in My Life” performance was excellent. Ciara‘s performance was embarrassing. I like to see her dance, but she doesn’t have the strongest voice in the world. Why would I want to hear her sing with nothing but a piano in the background?  And why oh why were there no dance tributes? Jamie Foxx was purposely trying to be funny with the “Beat It” thing in the beginning, so I won’t count that.

BET should have  pulled together an exciting  highlight reel of MJ’s performances  and topped it off with Ne-Yo doing his thing and maybe Usher doing a dance number and then just waited a week or two to put together a proper, star-studded tribute.

I will say though that there were some good performances that were not tributes. Jay-Z, Jamie Foxx (with Travis Barker on the drums), Maxwell, Monica, Keyshia Cole and the O’Jays were all entertaining and fun to watch.  Beyonce sounded pretty good on “Ave Maria,” but I would much rather see her do “Single Ladies” or something like that. She always does a great job with the dance numbers.

Joe Jackson sat in the front row for that entire show and I am so embarrassed.  BET did not do right by Michael Jackson with that “tribute.”  I’m looking forward to seeing what other networks have in mind because that ain’t it.


Posted by on June 29, 2009 in Black History, TV


Tags: ,

4 responses to “I’m So Done With BET

  1. Ashlie

    June 29, 2009 at 12:50 pm

    Thanks for putting that so articulately… I was so embarrassed for Keri Hilson, Ciarra, and Soulja Boy I had to change the channel!

  2. secretsociologist

    June 29, 2009 at 1:26 pm

    I am 100% in agreement with you. The “tribute” was awkward & poorly handled.

    I found Beyoncé’s vocal performance bewildering. Her singing was very nice, but what on Earth was the deal with the bride/angel/floating jellyfish costume?

    I think the program, with all its mediocrity, poor planning & lack of originality, just highlighted the sadness of Michael’s absence.

  3. The Abyss

    July 19, 2009 at 11:49 pm

    I came across your blog when searching for relationship blogs to possibly add to my blogroll.
    I have two comments:

    1. Since when has BET done anything right? Well, at least post-Tavis.

    2. I have a bit of a problem with how people are acting like they’re so devastated over the loss of MJ. People that don’t even know him personally. The same people that talked about him when he was going through the court trials. Now these people are planning tribute cruises and printing T-shirts and such. Why do people go overboard when somebody dies? Why can’t this same effort be put into supporting someone when they’re alive?

  4. loveisdope

    July 22, 2009 at 8:18 am

    I think it is totally possible to feel a genuine sense of loss when an artist passes away. For most people, music serves as a trigger to certain people/memories/places/emotions and talented artists like MJ have given decades worth of that to the world. There’s definitely a vulture aspect to celebrity death in this capitalist world of ours, but I think there is sincere grief as well.


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